Big Dreams

Who has never dreamed of an extended journey with family, friends, or someone they love? Stepping out of the routine, taking off for a month or two, or nine, exploring a state or a country, hiking a major trail, canoeing or sailing a waterway — these kinds of dreams must occur to most people at some time in their lives. But layers of “can’ts” and “why nots” prevent us from making them come true.

Sometimes, when the desire is great and the circumstances are right, reality comes out of such a dream. That’s how it was for us, the Blondin family. The cast included Mark and Betsy (42) and married 18 years, Donald, our 14-year-old, Kelly and Stacy, 12-year-old twins, and of course Buddy, the golden retriever (1 year old).

On September 30, 1996, armed with a laptop computer, digital camera, and our desktop computer installed in a 34-foot motor home, we left home in Boyne City, Michigan, for our trip around the United States.

Months of thought, preparation, anticipation and doubt had funneled into this moment. It was literally a crossroads in our lives.